This weekend I had quite the experience. It was a reluctant adventure, but I’m really glad I went.
It started out like this:
Sometime earlier in the Spring Semester, my friend Claire came up to me and said, “Billie Piper is coming to Dallas for Comic Con. We have to go.” Naturally, my first reaction was something like, “There’s a Comic Con in Dallas?” quickly followed by “OHMYGODBILLIEPIPERI’MGOINGTO DIE.” Yeah, something like that.
After hemming and hawing (with anything that isn’t a fountain pen or a book, I’m remarkably cheap), I finally caved in and bought tickets so that I could go with Claire and her friend, Laura. These were not just any tickets, but Premium tickets that got me access all three days of the show and a few other fun things. I had just gotten my tax refund, so I considered this a well-earned treat to myself. Of course, that was back in late February, which gave me about three months to experience buyer’s remorse. Excellent.
Cue May, where I find out that on the weekend in question I have a meeting on Saturday at 3pm that I
want to miss and, after three months of feeling guilty for wasting that money, I start thinking about selling my ticket. Not actually trying to sell my ticket, mind you—no, just thinking about it. Mentioning it at Ladies’ Night or in passing when people ask me if I’m free that weekend. “No, I have tickets for Comic Con, but I’m
about selling them.”
About a week before the show, I texted Claire to ask if she had a friend who might want to buy my ticket from me. After receiving the answer of “No, and what? You need to come,” I paused and accepted my fate. Then, the day before, I tried (with no success) to sell them on facebook.
I finally gave up and bought parking passes.
This will tell you about how I was feeling about Comic Con beforehand. I was excited, but felt ashamed at spending the money and nervous about being around that large of a crowd (I’m a terrible introvert, if you didn’t know that already). But, I thought it would be cool to see Billie Piper (even though Rose isn’t my favorite
companion, she is one of my favorites from the new series) and to hang out with Claire. So, I was excited but nervous when I showed up.
I found the parking lot and walked to the convention center and was greeted by Deadpool, who said I couldn’t get in without giving him a high five. I acquiesced and entered into a wonderful realm filled with superheroes, villains, and more characters than I could identify.
It’s like magic.
I’m so glad I went.
On Friday, our Premium tickets got us in two hours before the show actually started, allowing us to explore the bazaar before the crowds. When we were tired and hungry, we walked to a nearby fast food place and the girls ate while I ate the gluten free snacks I had snuck in (this place did not have a safe GF menu).
When we got back, we had time to walk around the bazaar for a while before heading to get in line for our seats to see Carrie Fisher.
Waiting in line to see Carrie Fisher. Note the Marvel tee.
Oh my gosh, that was cool.
Carrie’s session was supposed to be a Q&A. She was an hour late because of traffic from the flooding and had declined a moderator, so basically it was an excellent stream of consciousness talk that made me fall in love with her. Carrie invited one audience member onstage and ended up with that woman and her daughter onstage petting Carrie’s dog, who apparently goes everywhere with her.
Carrie actually laid down on the couch at one point.
Poor dear, I think she was tired from her trip!
Some people might have been disappointed, but I loved the way that Carrie tells stories. She reminds me a great deal of my late favored professor who was well loved for his tangents. It was lovely.
A few days later, I got the joy of having my tweet favorited by Carrie Fisher. Yes, Princess Leia favorited one of my tweets. I win at life.
So, that was Friday.
Saturday was an all day thing that involved watching the end of a Q&A session with Gillian Anderson (who is amazing, by the way) as well as Q&A sessions with Billie Piper, Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk, and Ming-Na Wen. We also did a lot of shopping, spent an irresponsible amount of money, and had fun. I even gave into the temptation of the refillable stainless steel mugs everyone was carrying around that are sold by Wild Bill’s Olde Fashioned Soda.
Some basic reflections:
Billie Piper’s talk was good, although I find it amusing that she hasn’t watched the last season and a half of
. It just goes to show that even the actors that played companions aren’t happy with Moffat’s writing. She was lovely, as always, and a lot of fun. There were lots of little kids who addressed her as “Miss Rose,” and I thought she was going to die from the cuteness.
Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk are hard to describe. I LOVED their session and they were so good about answering questions. Lovely men—in
Ming-Na Wen was the only session I went to alone (the girls and I sat together at the other two). She was amazing. I hadn’t realized she was the voice of Mulan (I haven’t seen that movie since it came out), but she owned up to being a Disney Princess and told some amazing stories about getting hired on
Agents of Shield
. Apparently the part wasn’t written for a particular ethnicity, so she and another Chinese American who worked on the show had to explain to the writers why the name of Agent Rice would need to be changed when they hired her.
Showing off the cowboy boots she bought to come to Texas.
Showing us her Disney Princess wave.
Because I’m a big Marvel fan and am in love with Agent Coulson, I probably enjoyed Ming-Na the most, but all the sessions were wonderful. It was amazing to be able to “get to know” some of these beloved actors through hearing their answers to questions and seeing the way they interacted with fans (and, for Nathan and Alan, each other).
Sunday I got to the show late because I had my Sunday morning routine of Mass and family time, but after that I showed up in time to see the end of a Q&A with Giancarlo Esposito, who plays a villain on
(which I’ve never seen). I don’t know anything about him, but he seemed cool.
Then, of course, the best part of all, a Q&A session with this guy:
Note: This photo is not mine.
If you don’t know who he is, you’re missing out. Stan Lee is pretty much amazing. I decided that I want to adopt him as a grandfather because he’s so lovely and sweet. Seriously, this man would be fun to be around even if he wasn’t the father of Marvel. His session was short, probably because of the immense energy expended for him to be up there, but it was so good. I’m so glad I had the opportunity to hear him reminisce and make jokes. He was darling.
Even if the world's most annoying cupcake hadn't been in the way, I couldn't have gotten a good picture. The lights messed it up.
I know I’m not doing a good job of describing the Q&A sessions in detail because I didn’t take notes and my memory for details is atrocious (I blame celiac’s disease). But, here are a few thoughts on the rest of comic con:
There were so many Castiels and 10
Doctors walking around that even I started to have a hard time telling them apart (everyone was wearing a brown trench coat and some weren’t as good about getting the hue of brown right for their character). Some of the cosplayers were amazing (for photos see
). I think Claire, Laura, and I really enjoyed a few Lokis and Iron Men (one who had a Pepper and children dressed as Captain America and Black Widow, which we thought would make a very interesting
spinoff: “Steve, go clean your room.” “No dad, I don’t wanna.”).
The Marketplace/ Bazaar:
There were a lot of great vendors. My favorites were a jewelry maker who sold me a time turner necklace and evenstar earrings (
) and an artist who makes fandom iconography (
). You should totally check them out. There was also a very talented artist who makes inappropriately suggestive paintings of certain characters and puts them on pillowcases. All kinds of things for all kinds of people!
I have a Castiel icon candle.
I'm not even caring that you're judging me right now.
All in all, it was a fun weekend. I’m sorry for the vagueness of this review, but I will say that I’m considering going again. It’s nice to have a safe place to express the different kinds of geekery that I am a fan of.